FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 14, 2017
Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodger Randy “Handsome Ransom” Jackson returns to HDT on Feb. 18
VERO BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 14, 2017) — Randy “Handsome Ransom” Jackson, who played for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers from 1956-58, will make his first visit to Historic Dodgertown since his playing days, on Saturday, Feb. 18. Ransom, who turned 91 on Feb. 10, will take a walk down memory lane, and share those memories with Historic Dodgertown visitors and Presidents’ Day Tournament participants.
Jackson recently published an autobiographical memoir in which he chronicles his life from growing up in Arkansas to being signed to take over for Jackie Robinson, only to quickly discover nobody replaces a legend like Jackie.
"I have fond memories of Dodgertown and the three spring training camps I was there with such Dodger icons as Jackie Robinson, Roy Campanella, Duke Snider, Don Drysdale and Sandy Koufax,” said Jackson. “It was a special time at a special place that has become extra special after 61 years. For at least one weekend, it will be 1958 all over again. That was the last time I was there."
Said teammate and friend Carl Erskine, who pitched for the Dodgers from 1948-59:
“We used him (Jackson) primarily at third base. He was not always in the regular Dodger lineup, as we were always trying to get the right bats in the lineup depending on the pitcher for a given day. You have to have a good temperament to do that. Once he came to the Dodgers in 1956 and was lockered up with Hall of Famers, he was in his element.
“I got to know Randy quite well. I pitched against him with the Cubs – I think he hit a couple of home runs off me with the Cubs. He was in the lineup the day I got my first no-hitter against the Cubs (June 19, 1952). He always teased me that he hit some line drives well that day, but they were all caught. Randy was a solid, short stroke hitter and had good power. He was respected as a person and is a very classy guy. We used to fish together outside of Miami. We had a very pleasant friendship.”
Handsome Ransom Jackson, Accidental Big Leaguer takes readers from his youth to playing for the Chicago Cubs, Dodgers and Cleveland Indians, including playing in the 1956 World Series and two Major League Baseball All-Star Games. He also played three years of college football at Texas Christian University and the University of Texas, where he competed in two Cotton Bowl Classics. Jackson’s book is co-authored by Gaylon White.
Jackson will be available to autograph his book on Saturday, Feb. 18 from noon to 1 p.m. at Historic Dodgertown’s Jackie Robinson Room.
Jackson’s visit aligns with Historic Dodgertown’s annual Presidents’ Day Challenge. Nearly 90 teams made up of youth ages 9U to 18U from 12 states and Canada will descend upon Vero Beach for this weekend tournament.
In addition to his visit to Historic Dodgertown, Jackson will make an appearance at the Vero Beach Book Center on Sunday, Feb. 19 at 3 p.m., and will be available to autograph his book. The Vero Beach Book Center is located at 392 21st Street.
About Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida
“A Florida Heritage Landmark”
World-famous Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida is a multi-sport, 80-acre complex on Florida’s Treasure Coast managed by former Dodger owner Peter O’Malley in a partnership since 2012. O’Malley, whose family developed and expanded the site formerly known as “Dodgertown” for nearly 50 years, partnered with his sister Terry O’Malley Seidler and former Dodger star pitchers Chan Ho Park and Hideo Nomo.
On November 10, 2014, Historic Dodgertown was named a Florida Heritage Landmark for its unique historic significance extending beyond baseball, as the first completely integrated Spring Training site in the South. The “Baseball and Dodgertown” historical marker is located at the entrance to the conference center.
The home of Dodger Spring Trainings from 1948-2008, it was the starting place for six World Championships and 14 N.L. Pennant-winning teams. Numerous Baseball Hall of Fame players trained on these hallowed grounds, as well as 20 visits from professional teams in Asia.
The all-inclusive facility, owned by Indian River County, gives teams of all ages the unique opportunity to train, play, dine and stay together in on-site villas. Participants utilize one of 10 ½ playing fields (seven are Musco-lighted for night games), including a new cloverleaf of youth baseball/softball fields with concessions area and new multi-purpose field (110 by 130 yards) for football, soccer and lacrosse.
Other amenities include clubhouses, two full-sized weight rooms, dining room, Stadium Club lounge and a competition-size swimming pool. The home of 6,500-seat Holman Stadium, Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida provides an all-encompassing experience for guests and is the ideal setting to build a championship team. It’s the perfect location for tournaments, camps, schools, business conferences and seminars.
Continuing its tradition since 1983, the Los Angeles Dodgers Adult Baseball Camp returned to Historic Dodgertown in November, 2014. Visit historicdodgertown.com for more information.
Ruth Ruiz, Historic Dodgertown – Vero Beach, Florida, (772) 257-8532